Plato Quotes

Poetry is nearer to vital truth than history.

PLATO, Ion

The direction in which education starts a man will determine his future life.

PLATO, The Republic

The beginning is the most important part of the work.

PLATO, The Republic

The more the pleasures of the body fade away, the greater to me is the pleasure and charm of conversation.

PLATO, The Republic

Democracy is a charming form of government, full of variety and disorder, and dispensing a sort of equality to equals and unequal alike.

PLATO, The Republic

Many men are loved by their enemies, and hated by their friends, and are the friends of their enemies, and the enemies of their friends.

PLATO, Lysis

If a man can be properly said to love something, it must be clear that he feels affection for it as a whole, and does not love part of it to the exclusion of the rest.

PLATO, The Republic

Was not this … what we spoke of as the great advantage of wisdom — to know what is known and what is unknown to us?

PLATO, Charmides

Until philosophers are kings, or the kings and princes of this world have the spirit and power of philosophy, and political greatness and wisdom meet in one, and those commoner natures who pursue either to the exclusion of the other are compelled to stand aside, cities will never have rest from their evils — no, nor the human race, as I believe — and then only will this our State have a possibility of life and behold the light of day.

PLATO, The Republic

In things which we know, everyone will trust us … and we may do as we please, and no one will like to interfere with us; and we are free, and masters of others; and these things will be really ours, for we shall turn them to our good.

PLATO, Lysis

The eyes … are the windows of the soul.

PLATO, Phaedrus

No evil can happen to a good man, neither in life nor after death.

PLATO, The Apology

For all good and evil, whether in the body or in human nature, originates … in the soul, and overflows from thence, as from the head into the eyes.

PLATO, Charmides

That’s what education should be … the art of orientation. Educators should devise the simplest and most effective methods of turning minds around. It shouldn’t be the art of implanting sight in the organ, but should proceed on the understanding that the organ already has the capacity, but is improperly aligned and isn’t facing the right way.

PLATO, The Republic

Everything desires not like but unlike: for example, the dry desires the moist, the cold the hot, the bitter the sweet, the sharp the blunt, the void the full, the full the void, and so of all other things; for the opposite is the food of the opposite, whereas like receives like receives nothing from like.

PLATO, Lysis

There is in every one of us, even those who seem to be most moderate, a type of desire that is terrible, wild, and lawless.

PLATO, The Republic

God is not the author of all things, but of good only.

PLATO, The Republic

Now in this island of Atlantis there was a great and wonderful empire which had rule over the whole island and several others, and over parts of the continent and, furthermore, the men of Atlantis had subjected the parts of Libya within the columns of Heracles as far as Egypt, and of Europe as far as Tyrrhenia.This vast power, gathered into one, endeavored to subdue at a blow our country and yours and the whole of the region within the straits, and then, Solon, your country shone forth, in the excellence of her virtue and strength, among all mankind.

PLATO, Timaeus

If you are wise, all men will be your friends and kindred, for you will be useful.

PLATO, Lysis

All knowledge, when separated from justice and virtue, is seen to be cunning and not wisdom.

PLATO, Menexenus

When the tyrant has disposed of foreign enemies by conquest or treaty, and there is nothing to fear from them, then he is always stirring up some war or other, in order that the people may require a leader.

PLATO, The Republic

For this … is the great error of our day in the treatment of the human body, that physicians separate the soul from the body.

PLATO, Charmides

Friends have all things in common.

PLATO, Phaedrus

The good are like one another, and friends to one another; and … the bad, as is often said of them, are never at unity with one another or with themselves, but are passionate and restless: and that which is at variance and enmity with itself is not likely to be in union or harmony with any other thing.

PLATO, Lysis

False words are not only evil in themselves, but they infect the soul with evil.

PLATO, Phaedo

There is great reason to hope that death is good; for one of two things — either death is a state of nothingness and utter unconsciousness, or, as men say, there is a change and migration of the soul from this world to another. Now if you suppose that there is no consciousness, but a sleep like the sleep of him who is undisturbed by the sight of dreams, death will be an unspeakable gain. For if a person were to select the night in which his sleep was undisturbed even by dreams, and were to compare with this the other days and nights of his life, and then were to tell us how many days and nights he had passed in the course of his life better and more pleasantly than this one, I think that any man … even the great king will not find many such days or nights, when compared with the others. Now if death is like this, I say that to die is gain; for eternity is then only a single night. But if death is the journey to another place, and there, as men say, all the dead are, what good, O my friends and judges, can be greater than this?

PLATO, The Apology

Musical training is a more potent instrument than any other, because rhythm and harmony find their way into the inward places of the soul.

PLATO, The Republic

The man who finds that in the course of his life he has done a lot of wrong often wakes up at night in terror, like a child with a nightmare, and his life is full of foreboding: but the man who is conscious of no wrongdoing is filled with cheerfulness and hope.

PLATO, The Republic

The people have always some champion whom they set over them and nurse into greatness…. This and no other is the root from which a tyrant springs; when he first appears he is a protector.

PLATO, The Republic

You cannot conceive the many without the one.

PLATO, Parmenides

Tools which would teach men their own use would be beyond price.

PLATO, The Republic

Must not all things at the last be swallowed up in death?

PLATO, Phaedo

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